Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Detailed Realistic Style + Me = Perhaps a Good Match

So, I admit that I am sort of embracing the more realistic style of watercolor painting, and while I knew from the beginning that style is much more “me” than the loose (place a bit of wet paint on wet paper and spread it around) style, the times I tried it in my early days of watercolor painting resulted in a feeling that I just might not be able to do it. In other words, there’s no doubt it’s a lot harder. But “a lot harder” also means “more challenging,” and that, too, MIGHT describe something that would appeal to me.

Still, though, I don’t like working at something if I don’t feel like I can eventually “get it” (not to be confused with “mastering it,” which I do not feel will ever be the case, when it comes to watercolor painting).

I have been applying myself to stick with some tutorials in this detailed, realistic style, and now I am beginning to think I might be able to get to the point of feeling a bit successful.

The previous post contained three of those types of painting (snowdrop flower, green and red apple, and monarch butterfly). For the last few days, I have been working diligently on this “Opening Rose.” It is getting more and more enjoyable for me to paint in this style (that is synonymous with saying I am feeling more and more like I can do it). 

I have always loved this Bible verse:
And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” - Colossians 3:17 (CSB).

And another:
“Whatever you do, do it from the heart, as something done for the Lord and not for people,” - Colossians 3:23 (CSB)

I do want to try to do my best at things I attempt to do. That said, a balance is needed for someone like me, who tends to expect perfection from myself, even when I know it’s not possible. So, sometimes, I allow myself to not expect so much. But I can always do it from my heart, while giving thanks to God.

That part of the first verse about doing it in the name of Jesus, giving thanks to God—that part plays well in the arena of painting botanical subjects, or animal subjects, for that matter. Every time I paint a flower or a plant or a bird, for example, I am made aware again of God’s marvelous creations. Take the monarch butterfly on the previous post, for example, or the rose in this post. These things are such great reminders of the majesty and miracle of God’s creation. Painting them really allows me to delve into the depths of the creation, and it is inspiring to me.

#watercolor #watercolorrose #watercolorbotanicals #rosesarecreatedbyGod #annamasonnaturestudio #detailedrealisticstyleofwatercolor #workatitwithallyourmight

Monday, June 3, 2024

Latest Artwork, Inspiring Verses and a New Journal

As promised in the last post, I am focusing for awhile on a detailed, realistic art style, as opposed to the loose style from the previous post. I like both styles, but there is a part of my “being” that kind of prefers detailed realism, although it is honestly much more difficult (i.e., challenging). I will probably go back and forth between the two styles, because I also like variety.

Following tutorials by Anna Mason (Nature Studio), in the last few weeks, I painted these three pieces:

Aside from my artwork, I would like to share a couple of verses that are among my favorites and happen to be verses that our pastor (my grandson Conner) recently led our congregation through, in our corporate prayer time. (As I recently confessed, I am drawn to verses that have to do with generations of believers…also, the Chris Tomlin song “Holy Forever” practically has me on my knees from the first line: “A thousand generations falling down in worship….To sing the song of ages to the Lamb…” Oh my…)

“Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come.” - Psalm 71:18

“But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children—with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.” - Psalm 103:17-18

And speaking of grandchildren, mine are all special, of course. My wonderful granddaughter Tory just blessed me with a new Prayer Journal for my birthday. She is such an inspiration to me. According to the foreword, the “Pour Out Your Heart” Prayer Journal is meant to be “a tool to help develop a lifelong pattern of gospel-centered, Scripture-based prayer…It is not something you will complete in a week or even a year. But over time, this little book will grow into a valuable treasure, a safe place to pour out your heart before the Lord, and an ever-deepening reminder of his promises and faithfulness…” I started working in the prayer journal today.

#watercolorsnowdrop #watercolorapple #watercolormonarchbutterfly #AnnaMasonNatureStudio #generations #legacy #athousandgenerations #HolyForever #prayerjournal

Friday, May 31, 2024

Beautiful Spring Days but a “Hitch in the Giddy-up”

I’m still trying to get used to the seasonal nuances of the Pacific Northwest. We have had some pretty spring days, but it seems like it’s taking a long time to be consistently nice and warm (and sunny). But there have been several days of sunshine, and my recent addition of a few hanging flower baskets provide some joy with their “touch” of spring. As I write this today, it is a perfect spring day, with sunshine and warm temperatures.

We are a bit restricted from our usual amount of “running around,” with my hubby’s herniated disk (and accompanying nerve displacement) causing a lot of pain. He can drive, and we do get out fairly regularly, but he really can’t get out of the car and walk much at all without lots of pain. He is showing progress, so we are hopeful to be back to normal soon, but this has been 2 1/2 months of his not being able to do most of what he generally can do without even thinking about it (mowing the yard, weed-eating, for example). 

It kind of makes us realize what all we take for granted! Doctors say it could even be up to a year before the disk works itself back into place. We are hoping that with his faithful adherence to the physical therapy exercises, we can speed up that timeline. We also hope that the disk will soon have moved away from the nerve, so that the pain is much less in the near future.

My watercolor painting has given me something to do on these different-than-usual days. I’ll share some of my recent work, and these are all the loose, wet-on-wet style. I have since returned to a more detailed style, and the next post will include some of those pieces.

Friday, April 19, 2024

Walls to Stay Within Are Also Walls to Keep Out

It’s been awhile since I did Bible art journaling. This tulip reminded me of the passage in Song of Solomon 2:11-12 (CSB): “For now the winter is past; the rain has ended and gone away. The blossoms appear in the countryside. The time of singing has come, and the turtledove’s cooing is heard in our land.” Yes, I am SO ready for spring.

By the time you reach the seventh decade, lessons have been learned and philosophies have been established. Sometimes I try to simplify the myriad deep thoughts that keep my mind busy. Put simply, I have concluded that two “areas” or “issues” that are at the very top of my “priorities in life” list are: COMMUNICATION and RELATIONSHIPS. Most everything else in life could likely be put into one or both of those categories (even my number one priority in life, my walk with Jesus my Savior, is about a relationship). Additionally, the two (communication and relationships) are somewhat interrelated (for example, a good relationship requires good communication).

My thoughts today are about relationships. I read SO many devotional thoughts, inspirational messages, and wonderful things that are “important to remember.” Because there is so much good stuff available, sometimes I actually save an article or a message that I want to read again and again. Such was an article published by Ann Voskamp in October 2017. I came across it in my files this week. Following are some of the points she makes in “When You’re Tired of Your Heart Getting Hurt: The Secret to the Good Life.” I found the article in February 2018 and saved it with this note: “I need this.” 

*Let your heart live unguarded—and you let love capture you.

*Paying attention to hearts—is the only way to spend your life well.

*Results of one of the longest longitudinal studies ever conducted: “Close relationships, more than money or status, are what keep people happy throughout their lives,” the study revealed. “Those ties protect people from life’s discontents, help to delay mental and physical decline, and are better predictors of long and happy lives than social class, IQ, or even genes.”

*The best stewardship of time is making time for relationships—even when it wounds.

*The secret to healthy aging is healthy relationships.

*To risk loving one another is our greatest safety, and to fearfully try protecting our hearts is our gravest error.


*The walls you build to protect your heart end up being the walls that imprison your life. The walls you’re building to keep the hurt out are the same walls that keep the healing from getting in.

*Your job is not to find love. Your job is to find all the walls you’ve built to keep love out.

Yes and Amen.

#AnnVoskamp #watercolortulip #spring #SongofSolomon #wallstoprotectalsokeeploveout 

Thursday, March 14, 2024

Sometimes It’s the “Little Things”

For whatever reason, and whether or not it’s a good thing, I am typically a deep thinker. Sometimes I wish that were not true. On any given day I could probably write several pages based on the deep thoughts I am having that day. It seems like I’m always looking for “the deeper meaning” in most every circumstance.

Now and then I remind myself to “chill,” and to let my mind rest. Then I can take a deep breath and recognize and appreciate the little things.

Like, yesterday evening I enjoyed a “cafe con crema.” When we were visiting our family in Argentina many years ago, I discovered that espresso drink (espresso with heavy, stiff whipped cream), but here in the States I hadn’t been able to replicate it without the work of actually whipping heavy cream (and being sure to use it before it spoiled). We recently found the Land O Lakes whipped cream that comes in a can like Reddi Wip and really is like heavy whipping cream. 

So with my Nespresso machine, using a Lungo capsule, and topping it with that heavy cream, voila! Same as cafe con crema in Argentina. 

A little thing, but it makes me smile.

Today I was able to complete the Kingfisher art piece that I started a couple of days ago. That means it didn’t end up in the trash can. I have heard “real” artists talk about their art going through “the ugly duckling” stage, and it does happen to me on almost every piece. But if I stick with it through that stage, and actually keep on until it’s finished, it’s a good feeling. 

It’s a little thing, but it’s a feeling of accomplishment that I like.

So, here in this writing is my evidence that I really can keep it simple sometimes and “bask” in the enjoyment of some “little things.”

#littlethings #cafeconcrema #nespresso #espresso #kingfisher #kingfisherwatercolor #watercolor

Monday, March 4, 2024

On This Date: March 4, 1956 (Turning Point in My Family's History)

 Today, March 4, 2024, marks the 68th anniversary of a significant event in my personal family history. On that date, March 4,1956, my father acknowledged and accepted God’s call to become a preacher. He was almost 30. I was almost 9, the oldest of four (later to become five). And, yes, I remember it well.

His decision on that date was even more dramatic against the backdrop of his life to that point: he had started drinking in high school, and after entering the Army Air Corps in World War II, had become an alcoholic.

Our family in 1954, before Daddy's decision

 I remember with sadness (and still some tears) those early days of my childhood with an alcoholic father. But I also remember the day, shortly after February 29,1956, when he came into the kitchen and said to his three daughters and baby son, “How would you kids like to have a preacher for a daddy?” A preacher’s kid? Are you kidding? No longer the embarrassing taunts from neighbors’ kids about how they were not allowed to play with us because of our father’s condition (often passed out)? “Yes! I would love it!," I remember answering. 

I never complained about, and was always thankful for, being a “preacher’s kid.” I had been something else, and I knew the miracle that had happened in our lives.

 Daddy had made the choice to turn his life over to God, a poignant story I’ll save for another time, a few days before March 4 (on February 29, 1956). At that time, he had promised God that if He would take away from him the desire to drink, he would do anything God asked. Daddy didn’t expect God’s response: God asked for his service in the ministry.

 Here is an excerpt from “My Life Story”:


March 4, 1956

Daddy surrendered to the ministry at the First Baptist Church, West Helena, Arkansas, where Mother and we four children had attended regularly. Shortly thereafter Daddy preached his first sermon. I can remember seeing him come into the front yard that morning, having returned from preaching his first sermon. It was the happiest I had seen him. I think he knew that he COULD do what God was asking him to do.

[Added March 4, 2011: Email from Mother to Janene, Keith and me: It was 55 years ago today (on a Sunday night) that he went with us to church, & when Bro. [Wilson] Deese gave the invitation, he went forward and announced that he was surrendering to God’s call to be a preacher!!

When I asked for more detail, Mother wrote: When I looked up, as Daddy came back from talking to Bro. Deese [at the front of the church, during the “invitation,”], I saw that he was crying.  The thought came to me that I couldn't remember any other time seeing Daddy cry. Bro. Deese told the audience that "Red Wilson is coming tonight saying that he feels that the Lord is calling him to preach".

In the next couple of days, Bro. Deese came to our house and sat down and talked with Daddy for quite awhile.  I think Bro. Deese talked to Daddy that day about going to college.



Our family in Summer 1956

 So, Daddy and Mother, and we four kids moved to Arkadelphia, Arkansas, later that same year, for Daddy to attend Ouachita Baptist College, to prepare for ministry. He began preaching wherever he could find the opportunity, and became pastor of his first church while still in college, in August 1956.  Daddy graduated from college in three years, with a major in New Testament Greek and straight A’s on his transcript.

Jessieville Baptist Church, Jessieville, Arkansas, 1958


From Daddy comes my love of learning

My two sisters and I began singing, first in two-part harmony and then shortly thereafter in three-part harmony, and we sang “special music” a lot of times when Daddy preached. Thus began the important role of music in our lives, that continues to this day, in my siblings and our children and grandchildren.

Other than how my young little life changed dramatically on March 4, 1956, how was that date a turning point in my personal history? It was because Daddy followed God’s call to be a preacher that, when he finished college, he began looking for a church to pastor in Missouri, where he could continue his studies at a seminary (Midwestern). The church that called Daddy to be their pastor was Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, Jefferson City, Missouri.

Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, Jefferson City, MO, 1959

In that little church there was a wonderful family named Ford. They had four children as well: three boys and a girl. Daddy’s first day as pastor there was June 28, 1959. That evening, after church, I staked my territory (remember, I had two sisters). “The oldest Ford boy is mine,” I said. That was the day I met and fell in love with that stinkin’ cute Russell Ford (he was 14; I was 12). My sister Janene is 15 months younger than I. She later fell in love with another of the Ford boys, David, and they got married three years after we did.

The love of my life, 1960

So, because Daddy turned his life over to God, accepted God’s call to be a preacher, followed God’s call to college, to his first pastorate, and then to Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Missouri, I met the man God had ordained for me. And because of that, we have had a wonderful marriage for 58 years so far, two wonderful children (Mark and Sharida), and our four wonderful grandchildren (Tory and Conner, Alyssa and Dawson), wonderful spouses for my children and grandchildren, and three incredibly awesome great-grandchildren.

But beyond that, I am overwhelmed with thoughts of how my children have influenced so many lives for God’s kingdom, including our son who is a pastor and church-planter, our grandson who is a pastor, our missionary granddaughter, our daughter who has a ministry as a high school counselor in a public school and works with young girls in a ministry program as well.

And what about Daddy, after that turning-point day? The first thing I remember was that he no longer wanted to be called “Red Wilson.” He said he wanted a different name, to go with his new identity. After that, he was known by his actual name, R.V. Wilson. He went on to pastor four small churches, all while he was also an educator (teacher, principal, and eventually Director of Teacher Certification for Missouri). 

So, he may have been your pastor, or your teacher, or your principal, or he may have signed your teaching certificate (he was all of that to me). For several years, he had a significant leadership role in Alcoholics Anonymous. Think of all those areas of influence just in his own personal life, based on that turning-point decision.

And how will the story continue? Only God knows. There are other stories through experiences of my siblings (my brother Keith and my sister Janene and her husband David) and their ministries, and prayerfully, through experiences of my husband and myself. 

The story continues through everyone whose lives have been positively affected by anyone in my family since Daddy’s decision in 1956—and their stories are ongoing, too… I know there are SO many people, and so, the story is never-ending.

That’s why I say March 4,1956, was a turning point in my family’s history.

Even though we cannot know all the ways the story will continue through the generations, the origin of the story will never change.

I am a thankful child of God—a thankful daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. 

I’m thankful that God called Daddy. 

I’m thankful that Daddy was willing to answer (even though he was not educated and far from a public speaker--God equipped him and he became a sought-after speaker at public events). 

I’m thankful that God allowed me to personally witness the awesome miracle of a changed life. 

And I’m thankful that the changed life positively impacted history from his time forward. 

That’s the way it works.

One thing about growing older, you know: you have the special perspective of looking back and actually seeing how God “works all things together for good.”

God performed a miracle in my family. He did that. He is still the same God. But it has always been true that it comes down to a personal and individual choice. Daddy “chose wisely.”

And what about you? Are you making decisions with your life today that will affect generations to come (infinitely)? The answer is yes, you are. The deeper question to ponder is whether your decisions today will leave a positive or a negative legacy.

Romans 8:28: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”


Friday, March 1, 2024

Coming Soon (the Hope of Spring)

For most of my adult life, I had a ready answer for, “What’s your favorite season?” Hands-down, it was Fall. Where I lived for most of my life, Fall signaled the end of a hot and humid summer and promised cool and crisp evenings to be enjoyed beside a wood-burning fireplace. I looked forward to sweaters and sweatshirts, apple pie and cinnamon baked goods, and cozy meals like chili and cheese suppers. 

The maple trees in the woods where we lived for a lot of years would turn yellow and orange and deep burgundy. My favorite flowers were autumn flowers, like mums. 

If we still lived in Missouri, Fall would still be my favorite season (it’s the season of my heart!). 

But now that we live in the Pacific Northwest, Fall signals the start of the Rainy Season, months on end of cold, dreary days and almost daily rainfall.

Here in the PNW, I have to say that my favorite season is Spring. Spring brings the promise of the end of the relentless cold and rainy days. As Spring approaches, there are some days of Sunshine (welcome euphoria), and then during Spring and Summer, the climate is like paradise, with days on end of sunshine (and almost no extreme heat or humidity!). 

 When we go for walks, we need sunscreen instead of an umbrella! 

During the Spring season, we put flowers out on our patio. We turn on the fountain that draws some little birdies for drinks and baths. Even though we say we’re not going to do it again this year, we get new bird feeders (on order as we speak) and fill them with sunflower chips. (Birds are the “wildlife” I get to see in my yard out here in the PNW, not to be confused with squirrels and deer and rabbits and groundhogs in our woods in Missouri!) 

So, yeah, come on little goldfinch and house finch and orchard orioles and chickadees…

So, yes, at this place and time in my life, Spring is my favorite season.

The calendar says it’s not Spring yet. But I know it’s coming. So the hope of Spring is already in my mind, and that helps. Being in the mindset of the promise of Spring, for my watercolor subjects, I gravitate to flowers like tulips and daffodils.

“What does the Bible say about Spring? This season is a time of warming weather and nature coming back to life. As flowers bloom and animals are born, we are reminded of the innocence and beauty that exists in this world and that there is new life all around us. As Christians, we are given new life and new mercies every morning. Spring provides a wonderful reminder to us that we should be living a full life and leaving the old dead parts of life behind. There is always hope during the coldest, darkest winters of life. Spring will come and new life will come forth!“ - from

Song of Solomon 2:11-12
See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone. 
Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is heard in our land.
#Spring #EndofRainySeason #daffodils #tulips #sunshine #watercolor #watercolordaffodil #watercolortulip 

Thursday, February 22, 2024

“Too Tight,” “Too Loose” or “Just Right?”

In the classic fairy tale of “Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” the familiar tale is told of finding the “just right” in the middle of two extremes. 

This tale came to my mind recently as I was once again experimenting with different styles of watercolor painting. Now that I have been painting for about three years, I kind of know the style that feels more comfortable for me. Still, it’s kind of fun to try other styles sometimes. I might find a style I like better, but if I don’t, then at least I have a new “commitment” to the style I already thought was “me.”

As I see the extremes in watercolor style, the continuum goes from extremely loose and abstract, where you have to hope the artist’s title of the piece will tell you what the subject is (“poppies in a field” or some such). 

Then there is a myriad of levels of “loose” painting, and as the levels travel more to the other extreme, the subjects are obvious, but the artwork is not intended to be mistaken for a photograph! 

Then the extreme style, on the other end of the spectrum from the extremely loose type, is a detailed, realistic style, where when taken all the way out, the artwork actually CAN be mistaken for a photograph.

I have never wanted to even try the extremely loose style. But a lot of my work has certainly been closer to “loose” than it is to “realistic.”

Here are some of my recent examples:

This is about as “loose” as I will allow myself to paint. This Eurasian Bluetit took me less than a half hour and was fun. The technique was wet-on-wet (wet paint on wet cold-pressed paper).

This Banana is about 3/4 of the way across the continuum between loose and detailed. The technique was wet-on-wet, on cold-pressed paper).

This Forget-Me-Not is pretty detailed, though would not be mistaken for a photograph. The technique was wet-on-dry (wet paint on dry hot-pressed paper).

This Ladybug is an example of very detailed and realistic; I’ve been told it looks like it could crawl off the page. My great-grandson said, “It looks REAL!” The technique was wet-on-dry, on hot-pressed paper.

So, where am I on the continuum at this point? Which is my Goldilocks’ “just right?” 

Well, the painting I’m most “proud” of is the Ladybug. It has drawn a lot of compliments from family and friends. Problematically, it took me several hours, and, quite frankly, it was not fun.

I’m all about the process AND the product. So, while I love the product, I paint for not only the product, but also for the enjoyment of the process. 

So, the detailed, realistic style is really not for me.

The Eurasian Bluetit makes me smile and was quick and fun to do, but I’d like the finished product to look a LITTLE more realistic.

The blue Forget-Me-Not, a little more toward the detailed style, was done on hot-pressed paper (as was the Ladybug and most all realistic and detailed pieces), which I do not like to use. And it simply was not fun to do (though I love the colors).

The Banana, while not my favorite subject, is my Goldilocks “just right.” It was loose in that it was done wet-on-wet. But it’s realistic enough for me (certainly not mistaken for a photograph, though.).

So for at least the near future, my pieces will be this wet-on-wet but not extremely loose style. That style is “just right” for me.

#loosewatercolor #realisticwatercolor #Goldilocks #justright #watercolorladybug #watercolorforgetmenot #watercolorbanana #watercolorbluetit

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Catching Up (and On My Work Table Now)


On My Work Table Today 

I have several projects in progress, and that’s usually the way I roll. 

My 2023 scrapbook is now complete, and November and December are the “biggest” months as far as photos, so it was a good feeling to have that done! 

I am enjoying a Bible Study on Exodus, simultaneous with a free seminary class on Exodus. I have always loved Old Testament history.

A new weekly planner is in process also (Erin Condren), though I’m not sure I’ll stick with it. Every time I think it will be really fun to do a cute planner, the new wears off quickly. So, I will only continue with it if it’s really how I want to spend my time (cuz I’m in charge of me!).

My watercolor art has been a challenge lately, manly because I am not enjoying the wet-on-wet technique that most art teachers use. I am now going to once again try the detailed, wet-on-dry style of Anna Mason, and I’ve spent a couple of days setting my my palette and getting everything ready to switch to that style (I already have all the supplies, so that makes it easy to get started). Soon I will post some of my work with the new style.

Here are a couple of recent wet-on-wet watercolor pieces:

#wetonwettechnique #watercolor #Exodus #planner

Monday, December 18, 2023

Generation to Generation

 I have written before and will write again about the importance of LEGACY and how highly I value the relationships I have with my children (and their spouses, whom I think of as also my children), their children (my grandchildren, and that includes my grandson’s wife whom I think of as my granddaughter), and the children of my grandson and his wife (my great grandchildren).

In recent years, the Scripture passages that talk about “generation to generation” are overwhelmingly meaningful to me.

Like this one:

But from eternity to eternity the Lord’s faithful love is toward those who fear him, and his righteousness toward the grandchildren of those who keep his covenant, who remember to observe his precepts. ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭103:17-18‬ ‭CSB‬‬

This may be my favorite of all!

Speaking of “family pictures beside the Christmas tree,” (referenced a couple of blog posts ago), here are a couple from this year, as we had a Christmas celebration at our house a few nights ago. This grouping is my Washington family (where we live). We will be seeing our Missouri family (our daughter’s family) in a couple of weeks. We are so blessed.

L to R: our son Mark and his wife Kristy, our grandson Conner and his wife Caroline, my husband Russell, myself, our granddaughter Tory. Front row, our Greats: Lily (2), Oakley (10 months)and Leeland (5).

Merry Christmas, everyone!

God is so good, and I am so undeserving of His love and mercy!

#familyChristmaspictures #generationtogeneration #Godissogood #childrenandgrandchildrenandgreatgrandchildren

Saturday, December 16, 2023

Relationships/Communication: Goal of Conversation

 One of my high priority Life Values is RELATIONSHIPS. The primary sub-heading of that Value is COMMUNICATION (because, obviously, a good relationship is based on good communication).

Several years ago I made a list of topics I would like to share on my blog. On that list is a reminder to recount a conversation that I had with my son a long time ago. Since that conversation, I have shared what he told me many times, with Bible study groups, friends, etc.

On the occasion of our conversation, I was thinking about having a very difficult conversation with a beloved family member. I was talking to my son about how I dreaded it and hoped I wouldn’t say the wrong thing.


His words to me (paraphrased):

“My advice would be to make it a priority to remember the goal of the conversation. 

“If the goal of the conversation is to get them ‘told,’ or ‘tell them off,’ that would be one approach. If that is what you decide is the most important goal, then do it. You may feel a whole lot better. After you have told them off, you may have a tremendous sense of relief that feels pretty good at the time (the “so THERE” effect).

“But if the goal of the conversation is to discuss something and then be able to leave the conversation with the relationship at least intact, and maybe even better, then your approach to the conversation will be entirely different.

“You have to realize that with the first option, you risk fracturing (or totally breaking) the relationship, as a result of your doing what you needed to do to feel better.”


Well, I must say that I took that advice to heart for the occasion I was seeking advice about; I thought it was insightful and wise, and I do believe it helped me maintain and possibly repair and save a relationship that was very fragile. I was able to make my points in that difficult conversation, but because my primary goal was to protect the relationship, I didn’t blow up and say some of the things I really “wanted” to say (but should not have).

I will also admit that through the years, in our own relationship, this wise advice has not always been followed by my son or myself. That’s when the need for forgiveness kicks in (a topic for another blog post). But, the reason this principle is so important is because words have consequences, and they cannot be un-said. 

But, we are human, and I dare say that everyone who tries to remember and implement this “goal of the conversation” principle will have successes and failures.

So, it’s an “easier said than done” goal, but nonetheless, it is a wise and important point to consider when facing a difficult conversation.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Colossians 4:6 NIV

I read this at “Why does Paul tell us to season our conversation with salt? He means that our words should be tasty and delightful to people who may hear them. Our words can also be used as a preservative—to build and to strengthen relationships.”

Timely advice is lovely, like golden apples in a silver basket.” Proverbs 25:11 NLT

Likely my last post before Christmas, I want to wish all my faithful followers and readers a very Merry Christmas!

#GoalofConversation #OhBeCarefulLittleTongueWhatYouSay #watercolorcandycane #MerryChristmas